31 Mar

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Texas Baseball Gets Dramatic Win Over Texas Tech in Extra Innings

Madison Carter broke a 2-2 tie in the top of the 12th inning with a two-out, two-run single to right field, and the No. 12/15 Texas baseball team defeated Texas Tech 5-2 Sunday afternoon.

Madison Carter broke a 2-2 tie in the top of the 12th inning with a two-out, two-run single to right field, and the No. 12/15 Texas baseball team defeated Texas Tech 5-2 Sunday afternoon.

LUBBOCK, Texas – Madison Carter broke a 2-2 tie in the top of the 12th inning with a two-out, two-run single to right field, and the No. 12/15 Texas baseball team defeated Texas Tech 5-2 Sunday afternoon to capture a series victory over the Red Raiders.

Texas improved to 22-7, including 3-3 in the Big 12, with the win. Texas Tech fell to 22-9 and 4-5 in the Big 12.

Madison Carter had the game-winning hit in the 12th.

Madison Carter had the game-winning hit in the 12th.

The Longhorns led 2-0 nearly the entire game, until the Red Raiders made a dramatic comeback to tie it in the bottom of the ninth. With closer John Curtiss on, Texas Tech cut the lead to 2-1 after a walk and two singles, and tied it when pinch runner Zach Davis stole home.

Curtiss kept Texas in it with a strikeout to end the ninth, stranding a runner at third and sending the game to extras, and pitched the next three innings to eventually earn the win.

In the 12th, Collin Shaw drew a leadoff walk and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt and groundout. After Alex Silver drew a walk to put runners on the corners with two outs, Carter swung at the first pitch he saw for a single through the right side that the Texas Tech right fielder misplayed, allowing Shaw and Silver to score. Carter, who reached third on the play, then scored on a Brooks Marlow single to make it 5-2 Texas.

Curtiss then struck out two in the bottom of the 12th to secure the victory for Texas.

The Longhorns had to escape real trouble in the 11th in order to get to the 12th. A walk and a fielding error gave Texas Tech runners on first and second with no outs, and Hunter Redman attempted to put down a sacrifice bunt, but Silver charged from first and threw the lead runner out at third. Curtiss then induced a lineout to center field and a groundout to second base to end the threat.

Texas, which had 44 hits in the series, recorded 15 on Sunday, including three each by Carter, Ben Johnson and C.J Hinojosa.

Like they did Saturday, the Longhorns jumped out to an early lead with a run in the first inning. Johnson singled, moved to second on a wild pitch and to third on a groundout, then scored on a two-out RBI single through the left side by Tres Barrera.

Johnson gave Texas its third home run in as many days when he led off the third inning with a solo shot to left field to give the Longhorns a 2-0 lead. It was the third home run of the season for Johnson, who is riding a seven-game hitting streak and has hit safely in 12 of the last 13.

Starting pitcher Nathan Thornhill went 5 1/3 scoreless innings, allowing four hits while striking out four and walking two.

Thornhill got inning ending double play balls in the first and fourth innings, and worked 1-2-3 innings in the second and third.

Morgan Cooper followed with 1 2/3 scoreless innings as Texas held on to its 2-0 lead until the ninth.

The Longhorns return to action Tuesday with a road game at Rice. Game time is set for 6:30 p.m.

SERIES NOTES

- Texas' 44 hits vs. Texas Tech this weekend are the most in a three-game series since the Longhorns had 45 at Oklahoma March 16-18, 2012.

- Texas' .338 batting average, 44 hits and 20 total runs came against a Texas Tech team which entered the weekend second in the Big 12 with a 2.78 ERA.

- The Longhorns snapped a streak of 12 consecutive series losses in the Big 12.

- Texas improved to 22-7 (3-3 in the Big 12) with the win. The Longhorns have a 107-41 advantage in the series over Texas Tech, including 46-21 in Lubbock.

- The three-game series total attendance was 12,551, a Rip Griffin Park record. The previous mark was 11,709 against Texas in 2012.

- After Sunday's outing, Nathan Thornhill now leads the Big 12 in ERA at 0.88. The senior has not allowed a run in his last two starts, a span of 13 1/3 innings. Thornhill allowed just four hits on Sunday and ranks fifth in the conference, holding opponents to a .184 average.

- Texas improved to 2-0 in extra inning affairs this season. The Longhorns also beat UTPA, 2-1, in 11 innings on Feb. 25.

- Over the last eight games, Texas is averaging 6.75 runs per game and hitting .336 as a team. Texas has a .458 slugging percentage and .432 on-base percentage. The Horns are 7-1 in that stretch and have recorded double-digit hits seven out of eight games.

Tres Barrera (17-36, .472), Zane Gurwitz (12-30, .400), Ben Johnson (12-32, .375), Brooks Marlow (12-32, .375), Mark Payton (11-30, .367) and C.J Hinojosa (9-30, .300) have been the offensive leaders over the last eight games.

- On the year, Texas leads the Big 12 with a 1.98 team ERA. TCU is second with a 2.91.

- Payton's national-best reached-base streak reached 68 games on Sunday despite an 0-for-5 day at the plate. Payton reached on a fielder's choice and an intentional walk.

- Since March 11, Barrera is 23-of-50 (.460) at the plate, including five doubles, a triple and a home run. He has a .660 slugging percentage and a .491 on-base percentage (1.151 OPS) in that span. He has raised his batting average 171 points (128 to 299) in that span.

- Texas turned two key double plays on Sunday and leads the Big 12 with 29 this season.

- The Longhorns are 11-1 when scoring in the first inning and 22-3 when scoring two runs or more.

(Via University of Texas Athletics - Press Release) 

James Schleicher is the publisher of Horns Illustrated magazine. He's also a fifth generation Texan and lifelong Austinite. Follow @HornsIllus twitter to keep up with all things Horns Illustrated.